Sports

Early struggles for Mount Si tennis

Building a solid effort for the Mount Si tennis team, junior Kaitlyn Usselman came within a finger’s breadth of handing a defeat to a Bellevue opponent in a recent match. - Seth Truscott / Snoqualmie Valley Record
Building a solid effort for the Mount Si tennis team, junior Kaitlyn Usselman came within a finger’s breadth of handing a defeat to a Bellevue opponent in a recent match.
— image credit: Seth Truscott / Snoqualmie Valley Record

It’s been a rocky beginning to the 2009 season for the Mount Si’s girls’ tennis team.

The Wildcats have suffered losses in all but one of their individual matches thus far against the toughest Kingco 3A has to offer in Bellevue, Mercer Island and Newport. The lone individual victory thus far was against Bellevue on Thursday, March 26, when the Wildcats’ Bailey Barnard took care of the Wolverines’ Bella Manning.

Kaitlyn Usselman also put together a solid effort in defeat against her Bellevue opponent, falling 6-7 in the second set. That has been the closest Mount Si has gotten to forcing a contest to three sets; each match is best two out of three.

Sophomore Shelby Thomas has emerged as a nice compliment to junior Allie Van Bryce. Thomas is the number-two singles player for the Wildcats, and has faced some solid competition. Unlike Van Bryce, who has only been able to muster game points twice in her three singles matches combined, Thomas has scored points in all but one set in her three matches.

The two of them form Mount Si’s top doubles team, and the pair has faced some of the best players in the league. It has been a struggle, but as the season wears on, these two should find the opposition a little easier to stomach and wins will likely be in the cards.

The Wildcat schedule does not get any easier, though. After playing at Sammamish on Thursday, April 16, Mount Si has a number of difficult opponents on tap for the rest of the season, particularly Skyline, Issaquah and Eastlake. All of those teams are expected to be deep in the hunt within the Kingco 4A League.

A match that could give the Wildcats a victory is the one Tuesday, May 5, at Liberty, as Mount Si and the Patriots have played very tight contests in recent seasons.

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